Originally posted by MagoSA
reply to post by Byrd
Considering the tech question has been put to rest :-) I would like to second Slayer's ice-dam theory with another example - the Bosporus flooding.
This theory is offered to supplement Slayer's idea of ice-dams is possible, as this theory uses a similar mechanism, but in a more confined way.
That's a different mechanism. In the Bosporus event, an ocean floods into a low lying area... so you have a whole planet's worth of water spilling
into an area (which might have lowered the ocean level by a tiny amount.) In the ice dams, you have a large lake of water that pours into a huge area
-- the ocean.
(pulling some figures up from Wikipedia)
The ocean surface is around 139 million square miles. Its volume (pour it into a ... planet-sized cup) is 310 million cubic miles.
If you flash-melted ALL the ice (both poles and all the glaciers) from the deepest part of the last ice age, the ocean would rise around 120 feet...
certainly high enough to drown out a lot of the coastlines. However, the entire glacier icepack didn't melt.
The ice lakes did add to the volume of water, but they weren't that large.
I found a very nice site that takes a look at the math, asking "how much ice would have to melt to raise the level of the oceans one millimeter...
one inch... one foot." Check this link out!
It's all metric, but you can convert to feet and inches here:
It turns out that the amount of ice you need to melt to raise the oceans an inch is 5677 cubic miles. So in order to raise the whole thing an inch,
you'd have to take an area the size of Connecticut, pack it with a layer of ice that's a mile thick, and melt the thing. The ice lakes were large,
but they weren't lakes the size of New Jersey.
The lakes leave traces and when they melt, they leave traces (this is an ice flood awareness
institute site that talks about ice age floods)
Could a vast lake over Beringia have suddenly melted? That's likely, but we don't see any evidence of it yet. Could there have been more than one
of these large floods? Oh yes.
But (as I tell kids) think of Earth as a giant crime scene. The floods leave traces... traces where the water was (as a lake) and traces when it
bursts its banks and flows out to sea.
So far, there's not convincing "fingerprints" or "footprints" to show this kind of "crime" (a single flood that suddenly raised the ocean level
several feet) occurred. The evidence is for a slower rise in the oceans and one that people moved away from, taking their technology.
Could there be this kind of evidence buried on the continental shelves? Possibly.
Was this the source of Biblical legends or the legend of Lemuria? No. The Biblical stories come from Babylon, and Lemuria wasn't a legend before
the Theosophists heard about the proposed "vanished land" (that didn't exist) and peopled it with figments of their imagination.